Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Enough already

Okay Toronto, I'm officially sick of it. Over it. Perturbed. Perplexed. Vexed.
Why don't we have food trucks? Nobody has ever really explained the reasons to me.
Because the strange thing is, we've actually had food trucks for years, scattered throughout downtown, on the streets outside of Nathan Phillips Square and on Front Street near the ACC/Rogers Centre. On the UofT Campus, too. All of the fries with gravy, ice cream and hot dogs you could ever want. Even Chinese food.
But nothing more, and nothing new. Why?
Could it be that Mayor Rob Ford hasn't tasted the Nirvana that is the freshly prepared multi-ethnic cuisine on wheels featured in just about every major American city I visit (plus Vancouver, to great effect)?
I've had hot, crispy falafel in Manhattan and a bright Banh Mi in Boston.
There are entire shows dedicated to the topic, for goodness sake, as well as cookbooks and apps. (This thing is officially happening, people!)
Food truck food is largely honest affordable food made by passionate people using fresh ingredients and indigenous (or creative takes on trusted) recipes.
In other words, it's exactly what Toronto is all about.
So enough already. Let's cut the red tape and get this truck moving.
If anyone knows how I can help, let me know, and then I'll let everyone else know.
And then soon enough, we'll be eating grilled cheese sandwiches and kimchee tacos, and before too long we'll never know an evening that is not brightened by a Montreal smoked meat sandwich or a warm Belgian waffle by moonlight.
It will be a beautiful thing.


Malcolm Jolley said...

Amy, I think the big reason we don't have food trucks is because we have a lot of high density, low rent older building stock, unlike newer, West Coast cities. The major food truck scenes in North America tend to be in cities that were largely developed in the car culture of the 1950s and later like Portland or LA. Young chefs in Toronto can still get relatively cheap rents in high volume neighbourhoods like Dundas and Dufferin or Bloor and Landsdowne. So our hipster, young resto scene is bricks and mortar, and our biggest food truck scene is in sprawling, suburban Niagara. Blame Jane Jacobs! - Malcolm

Amy said...

Agree to disagree Malcolm. NYC and Boston are pretty old cities and they make it work. And opening a resto in a low rent fringe Toronto neighbourhood still isn't nearly as cheap (or handy) as a roaming food truck. Also, I will never blame Jane Jacobs for anything! (Thanks for your thoughtful comments.)